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Breaking Down the Surprising Amount of CGI in A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS

Breaking Down the Surprising Amount of CGI in A SERIES OF UNFORTUNATE EVENTS

Since you clicked on this article, chances are pretty good that you’ve already completed–or are in the middle of–a quality binge watch of Netflix’s new show A Series of Unfortunate Events. We find the show, based on the children’s books by Lemony Snicket (the pen name of author Daniel Handler), breathtakingly beautiful and much more immersive than that of the 2004 adaptation starring Jim Carrey. We think part of that immersive quality is because of the intricate world created by the VFX team over at Zoic Studios.

recent post on io9 brought Zoic’s VFX reel to our attention and we’re floored by just how much detail went into creating the world that the Baudelaire children find themselves in. As you would expect for some of the more impossible or dangerous things that happen, the series has its share of CGI alterations. This is especially true when it comes to the poker-playing and snake-charming tendencies of the youngest Baudelaire child. Watching the series from now on will make us wonder whether or not the adorable infant actress Presley Smith (Sunny) ever filmed her scenes with the rest of the cast, due to all the digital additions that seemed so real and innocuous. For instance, being held one-handed high above NPH’s head looks real and is completely possible to do in real life but we recognize how dangerous that could be. Since there’s no such thing as an stunt-infant–it makes sense that there are certain things baby wranglers (or “parents,” if you want to use boring words) won’t let their child do and are probably best to accomplish via CGI.

What really surprised us is the level of CGI involved in the exterior shots and just how much of it was green-screened. We understand that the locations the Baudelaires travel to are fictional, but we weren’t expecting so much of, well, almost everything to be built digitally. We were kind of hoping for some grand and ornate set pieces of one of the homes or a creepy real location or two to sneak their way into the show. However, it seems Lemony Snicket’s world is just a little too fantastic to exist in real life. This, however, actually speaks volumes about the actors’ abilities (especially the children’s) to pull us further into that world, knowing that they spent their time filming against so much green screen and things that just weren’t there at all.

What digital effect in the video were you certain was real? Let’s discuss in the comments below!

Image: Netflix

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